Hurricane Boats is a brand that manufactures deck boats in a variety of configurations. All of their models have a focus on comfort and are considered to be of good quality.
How good are Hurricane Boats? Let’s find out!
Here’s How good Hurricane Boats are:
Hurricane Boats is generally considered to be a mid-tier deck boat manufacturer in terms of quality and cost. They are also reliable and lower-cost. They have a large number of configurations and allow for comfort, style, and customization.
A Brief History Of Hurricane Boats
Hurricane Boats got their start in Elkhart, Indiana, in 1974.
They became known over the next several years for affordable family boats, with a focus on comfort. Eventually, they began to build only deck boats in a variety of designs.
Around 1998, Godfrey Marine, a brand of pontoon boat manufacturers, acquired the Hurricane boat brand. Shortly after that, both brands fell under the banner of Boat Holdings, LLC.
In 2018, Polaris Industries, Inc. purchased Boat Holdings, LLC, for a reported $805 million. Hurricane was a part of the purchase, and Boat Holdings became the Polaris Boat Group.
In April of 2021, Hurricane boats announced plans to open another manufacturing facility in Syracuse, Indiana, on land already owned by their parent company, the Polaris Boat Group. This facility was where several other brands owned by Polaris were manufactured before being shut down.
This expansion directly results from increased demand for the Hurricane lines of deck boats, as sales have steadily increased in recent years.
They are perceived to be the marine industry leader in the volume of deck boats sold.
How Reliable Are Hurricane Boats?
The main feature of Hurricane Boats is their comfort for many people, whether family or friends.
As with all deck boats, they are intended more for protected waters and coastal use than offshore.
They are a common sight in Florida, where they are a daily sight along the waterways or beach-hopping.
Hurricane Boats is a popular choice for rental companies to fill out fleets and boating clubs with common boats.
There are several reasons for this. The company’s boats are relatively inexpensive, and their layout is fairly simple.
But their reliability is maybe the strongest factor in why the boats are common in these rental fleets. They have a general reputation for being low-maintenance and forgiving, and easy to use.
Most people feel that that they are a rough ride in choppy water. This is characteristic of most deck boats.
How Durable Are Hurricane Boats?
Hurricane Boats is considered to be a decent manufacturer.
They have a high volume of production, so occasional oversights in quality control happen. Usually, this is not serious, like incorrect wiring to a gauge, but there have been reports of new boats having cracks in the gel coat or even the hull before ever hitting the water.
That being said, most owners feel the boats are well-made, particularly for the price. Even though comfort is the company’s focus, the toughness in the construction is seen as being a strength.
Overall, their durability is what you would reasonably expect from a mid-tier manufacturer.
The transoms of some models are constructed of marine plywood, though since the middle of the 2010s, more models were being made with composite materials.
While most plywood transoms are fine, owners should be aware of it, particularly if they do any maintenance requiring new holes to be drilled into the transom.
The hulls come with a limited lifetime warranty, which indicates the company’s faith in its construction.
What About Older Hurricane Boats?
Older models of Hurricane Boats have a decent reputation online, and it is about the same as current models.
There is usually the major caveat that they are not good for offshore or dealing with waves, but they are comfortable in coastal waters and rivers.
A typical assessment by an owner, made in 2009, was:
“I have an ’03 Fundeck 211 with a Honda 200, and it is a common boat here in SW Fla… It is shallow running, and with the front and back boarding ladders, it is easy to visit islands for seeing sights. Wiring is average, hull seems pretty good.”
[Source: The Hull Truth]
Do They Still Make Parts For Older Models?
While the company has made their boats in the same plant since 1974, it can still be difficult to get replacement parts.
Many of these were actually made by other manufacturers and are no longer being made.
Hurricane encourages owners to contact their dealers for any part requests. The company does have a very large dealer network, and some have been representatives for several decades, so there is a decent chance of finding an old part in this manner.
The company also has a very active forum, with many owners who are knowledgeable and eager to help, so you may find some obscure parts going to that resource. There are several forum posts on this exact topic.
Finally, there are the typical online spots for replacement parts. Boatingoutfitters.com has a large selection of replacement parts.
What Are Typical Problems With Hurricane Boats?
While the company has a solid reputation for making a comfortable boat, a few issues have cropped up from time to time on some of their boats.
One issue that some owners have experienced is rust or corrosion on their stainless steel. While stainless steel does not rust theoretically, there are several formulations, and not all are quality.
So occasionally, Hurricane Boats has used lower quality stainless.
A cosmetic issue that some owners run into involves cracks in the dashboard. These emanate from screws in the cover and may not be covered by the warranty.
The most serious issue some owners have reported concerns cracks in the hull. This does not seem widespread, but at least one skipper reporting cracks showing up after only 80 hours of use.
How Long Do Hurricane Boats Last Compared To Similar Brands?
According to feedback from owners and online forums, Hurricane Boats seem to last as long as most boats in their price range, or perhaps longer.
While they are a popular choice in rental fleets, as mentioned, this kind of service wears boats down fairly fast. Engines see tremendous hours on them, and renters tend to bang the boats up without much care.
So while these rental fleets choose the brand due to their reliability, durability, and low cost, no boats last particularly long in this kind of service.
These tough years of service age a boat fast, and the reduced life is not an indicator that Hurricane Boats are shorter-lived than other brands.
Instead, their continued usage in such fleets is an indicator that they do last, as no company will buy boats for their rental fleets that require constant maintenance or fall apart fast.
Do Hurricane Boats Hold Their Value?
Hurricane Boats are about average in maintaining their value relative to other boat brands.
A 2015 SunDeck 2000 with a Yamaha 150XB outboard cost $48,657 new in that year. Currently, that same model has an average resale price of $36,690. That is a depreciation of 26%.
A 2015 FunDeck 236 with a Yamaha F150LB outboard cost $45,110 that year new. That model now has an average resale value of $32,850, for depreciation of 28%.
Are Hurricane Boats Still Being Made?
Hurricane is still building boats in their original factory in Elkhart, Indiana, and soon in their new plant in Syracuse, Indiana.
They currently have 41 different models of deck boats being manufactured in 4 main lines.
They do not advertise prices on their website; instead, they put you in contact with local dealers in their extensive network.
Their SunDeck series is divided into Outboard and Inboard/Outboard lines. These are their signature lines and the most popular, maximizing comfort and space. The SunDeck OB runs from 18 to 26 feet in length, and the I/O models run from 18 to 24 feet.
The SunDeck Sport series is again broken into Outboard and Inboard/Outboard lines. These boats sacrifice a few amenities for better speed and performance.
The SunDeck OB line runs from 18 to 21 feet, while the I/O line runs 18 to 20 feet.
The FunDeck line is a hybrid series, with the upper structure of a pontoon boat on a traditional but wider hull. They run from 18 to 23 feet in length.
Their Center Console series of deck boats features more open layouts than their regular deck boat offerings. These models run from 18 to 23 feet in length.
Hurricane Boats is the leading manufacturer of deck boats in the United States by volume.
They are known for providing decent quality and a comfortable ride for many people at a good price.
If you are in the market for a deck boat, they should be on your list to inspect.
If you live in an area in the rental fleet, take one out for an afternoon to see how you enjoy the ride and inspect the boat for how it holds up to rough, sustained usage.